During the month of March, our church will bear witness to most, if not all, of the ordinances. Brethren often talk about three main ordinances: baptism, Love Feast, and anointing.
Pastor Tim and I were very encouraged by the engagement of The Journey during this past Advent. Several of you came to us and shared how you enjoyed having an opportunity to engage the Christmas story on a different level. Some of you even asked if we would do another book study during Lent, especially since Adam Hamilton advertised one of his Lenten studies in the back of the book we were reading.
Lent is already upon us, beginning with Ash Wednesday on Valentine’s Day and concluding with Easter on April Fool’s Day (it is a unique year to have these holy days connected with other holidays). During Lent this year we hope to learn more about our God through learning more about Jesus. To do this we will be exploring Jesus’ “I AM” statements from the Gospel of John each week in worship.
I hope this first newsletter of 2018 finds you well and holding on to the joyful spirit of Christmas which exudes from the story of our savior’s birth. Yet, right after Christmas we are flooded with these themes of fresh starts, resolutions, and life style alterations.
It’s the most wonderful time of the year and the beauty of the season is always a favorite of mine. Many of you know that I love children’s books. One book that I acquired this past year is a little book called “Why Christmas Trees Aren’t Perfect” by Richard H. Schneider and illustrated by Elizabeth J. Miles. This is a profound little book, filled with thoughtful reflection on the season.
Advent is approaching quickly, and so with this last Pastor’s Pen before Christmas preparations are completely upon us, Pastor Audrey and I wanted to highlight the journey we will experience together in the weeks preceding Christmas. We have been impacted by a little book called “The Journey: Walking the Road to Bethlehem” written by Adam Hamilton ....
As you may have already heard, our fall Love Feast is undergoing some changes this year. Love Feast in the fall will continue to be on World Communion Sunday which this year is October 1st, but this year we are going to move Love Feast right after the 11:00am worship service.
Some people have called it the “all hands on deck weekend.” And we are certainly hoping we get some divine help too on September 16-17 when we host our annual Fall Festival on Saturday and a Homecoming Sunday. These are all church events, both with strong invitational themes.
Our 2017 Annual Conference theme was “Risk Hope.” During our Sunday morning worship on August 20, we will spend some time reflecting on the week of Annual Conference, both the business and the theme. To prepare for this time, I am going to give you some of my initial reflections from the week of conference. We don’t often think about hope being a risky venture, but it is, in fact, something that comes with a cost. Hope often means looking beyond what seems to be our current reality.
Reconcile: Conflict Transformation for Ordinary Christians by John Paul Lederach
I have been reading this book that I bought at last year’s Annual Conference. I read several books written by John Paul Lederach in college as a Peace Studies minor and was pleased to see that he had written a new book. Lederach is well known by Anabaptists for his work in conflict transformation. This new book, Reconcile: Conflict Transformation for Ordinary Christians, is a different style for Lederach.